Leadership in Human Resource Management

Leadership in Human Resource Management

Leadershipin Human Resource Management


Future’sleadership model is predicted to consist of fewer levels, fewermanagers, and a more collaborative environment. In such anenvironment, characteristics that are likely to propel leadersleading various organizations are best described such terms ascourage, spirituality, and confidence. Limited resources, emphasis ondelivery, and global competition are among the contributing factorsthat focus on developing leaders. Organizations are currently knownto respond with human resource programs from the classrooms to realbusiness situation. Some firms, for example Infosys andPricewaterhouseCoopers, have stepped up efforts in human resourcedepartments to develop and groom leaders and feed their successionplan. Infosys’s HR department has the three-tier model that demandsfor mentorship cascaded down from the board members to well-developedbusiness unit leaders. Such organizations come along with HR seniorexecutives that are expected to come up with substantial input inmaking strategic decisions. Additionally, HR executives are inpartnership with their teams in order to have a direct impact on theorganization’s goals and objectives.

Leadershipin Human Resource Management

Therehave been a lot of books and articles, in recent times that have beenprinted on leadership and human resources. Until recently, the roleof leadership and human resources has merged into one subject titled,&quotleadership in human resources&quot. In thishistorical-theoretical paper, the evolution of leadership in humanresources will be examined drawing upon social and behavioralsciences literature. Three areas of this merger of leadership inhuman resources will be analyzed: (a) technical, (b) human, (c) andconceptual skills to recommend a training strategy for organizationsto adopt in this ever-changing global economy.

OrganizationalLeadership versus Human Resources

Inan organization, leadership and human resources are among competingmanagement approaches that are constantly in conflict. Leaders inbusiness, however, are at a better position to instill strengths ofeach of the two approaches into a more coherent strategy. The mainobjective for this is to lead an organization or a business tosuccess in the long term through achieving its objectives andfavorable policies on the management of the employees.

  1. Strategic Management

Strategicmanagement refers to an umbrella term, especially in organizationalmanagement that point out to the management of a business or anorganization’s goals, missions, and visions. The aim of a strategicmanagement is to develop procedures and policies that direct theorganization’s allocation and use of resources, while it recognizespeople within the organization as the most valuable resource(InternationalJournal of Value-based Management, 2012). Puttingthis into consideration, there are two strategic management theoriesthat have emerged: human resources and organizational leadership. Forbetter understanding of the importance of a strategic management inthe organization, begins by first differentiating between theaforementioned approaches.

  1. Organizational Leadership

Inevery business venture, a solid management is required to ensure itruns smoothly and more profitably. Organizational leadership thriveson this concept of management by focusing on action-based approach tothe strategy, which helps in guiding a business (InternationalManagement Development Association, 2014).Organizational leadership, sometimes called the soft-skillsleadership, combines for effective communication, team-building, opendialogue, and self-governance, molded into a model for directing thebusiness. Within the organization, individuals are empowered to makesound choices of their own about their skills, workload andinterests, with their preferred work routine or schedule(InternationalJournal of Value-based Management, 2012).In organizational leadership, the concept is based on the happinessof the employee, and that he or she will more likely be moreefficient, effective, and productive than the one constantlymicromanaged, and has not ability or say over his or her own actionsPosner &amp Kouzes (2006). Journalof Economics &amp Management Strategy (2012)observed that autonomy is more central to the organizationalleadership.

  1. Human Resources

Humanresources management refers to a skill-based approach applied onstrategic management. HR managers work tirelessly to ensure that inan organization, standard list of procedures and policies, whichguides the smooth flow of the business. The inclusion of the plansfor benefits and compensations, are in compliance with the laborlaws, professional development, and training. A sense of creativitycan be felt in human resources for instance, since it allows theorganizational employees to pick their own plans for training.However, it usually takes a more standardized approach in ensuringthat all the employees afford the same kind of rights and privilegesin the workplace.

Combiningthe Approaches

Managersin an organization are attracted by the organizational leadership,especially those that are casual or free-spirited. Human resources onthe other hand, tend to be attracted by efficiency-oriented andskills-based managers. For more efficiency in realizing their setobjective goals, mission statements, both types of management styleshould be encouraged, while merging them into appropriate tasks ordepartments. InternationalJournal of Value-based Management (2012)observed that a solid focus to ensure that compliance of humanresource coupled with a well-executed visionary intentions onleadership will assist the business to balance its legal requirementsand policies, especially with the desire to keep hold of theemployees, and be more motivated engaged, and more productive.

InHealth Care Corporation for example, and as part of organizationalleadership, the combined approaches have resulted in executiveswithin the organization to come up with a corporate strategy. Thisthey do by first studying and analyzing the industry and itsenvironment conditions within which they operate. Strengths andweaknesses are then assessed, especially for those players theycompete with (Journalof Economics &amp Management Strategy, 2012).With both competitive analyses and the industry in mind, they thenset up a distinct strategized position where they are able tooutperform their main rivals, while building a competitive advantage.

Toachieve such competitive advantage, especially in health care forexample, the organization will most likely choose to eitherdifferentiate itself away from the competition. This could be for apremium price or rather to pursue more profits at low costs. Theorganization will likely align its chain value in accordance with itsset objectives, building up on manufacturing, higher levels ofmarketing, and the human resources strategies. InformationResources Management Association (2012)observed that on such a basis, these strategies, budget allocation,and financial targets are then set.

Leadershipin Human Resource Management: Managerial Skills

Asmentioned in the thesis, theevolution of leadership in human resources drawn upon from social andbehavioral sciences literature, will examine three areas of themerger between leadership and human resource. The three areas arepart of the managerial skills with the paper aiming to recommend atraining strategy for organizations to adopt in this ever-changingglobal economy. According toPosner &amp Kouzes (2006),there are three managerial skills, namely conceptual, technical, andhuman relations skills. Leadership in human resource management isnot a simple task, mores so because of the existence of hierarchywithin the organizational structures.

Managerialskills simply represent the ability and knowledge of an individualpositioned as a manager, to fulfill certain managerial tasks andactivities. This ability and knowledge can easily be learned andpracticed. This can also be acquired following a well-executedstrategy in the organization through putting into practice theimplementation of necessary tasks and activities (Journalof Economics &amp Management Strategy, 2012).Therefore, every skill can be constructed through practicalexperience as a result of implementation of strategies. Thesemanagerial skills are

Technicalskills: Strategiesfor implementation is founded as a result of the manager’s effortto acquired knowledge and ability to apply different techniques. Notonly are they related to only the use of machines, but technicalskills also skills that are apply for increase in sales, designing ofdifferent types of organization’s products and services, whilemarketing them (InternationalJournal of Value-based Management, 2012).First level managers within an organization, which is also part ofthe human resource management required, are best suited with havingtechnical skills.

Conceptualskills: Theypresent the ability and knowledge of a manager for having more ofabstract thinking as part of leadership strategy. This means themanager is in a position to see the whole thorough diagnoses anddiagnosis of varied states. This becomes easy when predicting thefuture of business leadership (GlobalPartnership Management Journal, 2011).Conceptual skills are important as part of the managerial processconsidering the organization has more business elements and goals.Employing conceptual skills assist in the managerial, by lookingoutside the objectives of one business department, and make decisionsthat ensures satisfaction of the overall business objectives(InformationResources Management Association, 2012).Conceptual skills are important, especially for high-level managers,but less important for level one manager.

Humanor interpersonal managerial skills: Theseskills represent a manager’s ability and knowledge to work closelywith people. Working closely with people represents one of the mostimportant managerial tasks. Unavailability of people does not requirethe need for the existence of organization management (InformationResources Management Association, 2012).Human skills emphasize on the leaders to motivate the organization’semployees to perform and ensure better accomplishments areguaranteed. More effective and efficient use of human potentialwithin the company or elsewhere will be realized.

RecommendedTraining Strategies for organizations

Inthis ever-changing global economy, there is need to strategize on howthe three areas of managerial skills are merged as part of leadershipin human resources. With the implementation of strategies, the basisof it all is often on budget allocations and financial targets set.With these managerial skills, the underlying logic is that theorganization’s strategic options would mainly be bounded by theenvironment. To put into perspective, structure shapes theorganization’s strategies. One of the approaches based onapplication of technical skills, is the “structuralist” approach.According to InternationalManagement Development Association (2014),the approach or rather the strategy, has its roots embedded onstructure-conduct performances paradigm.

Theparadigm has dominated the practice of the strategy in mostorganizations for close to 25 years, according to Posner&amp Kouzes (2006).Based on the study, the performances of the organizations in questionwill likely be dependent on the conduct of the employees. This willin turn be dependent on the basic structural factors, for example thenumber of buyers, sellers, and barriers of entry. Technical skillswould then be required here, in which the worldview casualty flowsdetermined from external conditions streaming down to corporatedecisions are prevented from exploits.

Thesecond strategy therefore, would be the use of blue ocean strategyframework, which would help the organization to systematicallyrestructure and reconstruct the industry and reverse the sequence intheir favor. The managerial skills here would be the application ofthe use of conceptual skills. This is because according to theInternationalManagement Review (2014),the strategy has its embedded roots on the emergence of economicscalled the endogenous growth. Its central paradigm posits thatactions and ideas of the management and individual players are ableto shape the industrial and economic landscape. With the use ofconceptual skills within the human resource management, this strategywill be able to change this Reconstructionist approach.

Inhealth care industry for example, the use of structuralist approachhas since become relevant and valuable. On the other hand however,the use of Reconstructionist approach is applied in certainindustries and economic times. In today economic hurdles, applicationof Reconstructionist approach as a strategy. The InternationalManagement Development Association (2014)cautioned that as part of the organization leadership, especially inhuman resource management, there is need to choose the mostappropriate strategy, while putting into consideration the type ofmanagerial skills are best suited. The need for the right strategy,however, may not be enough.

Topexecutives will therefore be required to employ human skills toensure that their organizations are in alignment with the productionof sustainable quality performances by nurturing close interpersonalrelationships with the employees. The InternationalJournal of Value-based Management (2012)observed that most executives are aware of the mechanics involved inmaking structuralist approach, for example, to work.

  1. The Three Strategic Propositions

Whicheverapproach is applied, the success of a strategy often hinges aroundits alignment and development of three propositions, namely

  • A value-based proposition that attract buyers,

  • Profit-based proposition enabling the organization to make money, and

  • Personal proposition that motivates employees within the organization.

Thepoint where the two approaches are in divergence would be inalignment with the above propositions.

Unlessthe company in question develops a complete set of consistency inpropositions, it is therefore unlikely that a sustainable andhigh-performing strategy will be developed. If, for example, theprofit and value propositions are very strong, and the peopleproposition find it hard to motivate the organization’s employees,then the organization could experience temporal but unsustainablehigh level of success (InformationResources Management Association, 2012).This would also be a classic example of a failure. At the same time,the organization in question which offers motivation to people’spropositions, and would find itself mired by poor performances.


Amongcompetitive approaches that are normally in contention,organizational leadership and leadership in human resources are twoapproaches merged together evidenced with the need for strategiesthat would oversee smooth running of the organization it is appliedin. the paper highlighted the two approaches as separate entities,with both merging to form what would be considered to be theevolution of leadership through the years. The paper also examinesthe three types of managerial skills, namely technical, human, andconceptual skills.

Theneed to strategize, while the skills are interwoven into theorganization’s mission, vision, and set objective, saw the use ofstrategies such as structuralist and Reconstructionist applied.Additionally, three prepositions a value-based proposition thatattract buyers, profit-based proposition enabling the organization tomake money, and personal proposition that motivates employees withinthe organization, showed that the success of the organization alsohinges on the alignment of the propositions.


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